Skip to main content

Florida Friday; the Great 2012 Florida Trip Part 1 the Sunshine Skyway Bridge

Throughout my entire life I've had interactions with the state of Florida.  I had family around the Pensacola and Tampa areas, our family took trips down to the state from the Mid-West to theme parks in the 1980s/90s, and of course there was racing as well.  Back in late 2012 the economy was still hurting in Arizona and I was getting ready to make the move to Florida.  Before I moved to Florida, I took a long trip to the southern half of the state to get a lay of the land which is what this blog is about.  I have a ton of stuff sitting in albums from 2012 to 2016 which I figure would make for a decent Friday topic, or "Florida Friday."

Upon arriving in Florida I wanted to go out and see some of the sites that I wanted to always check out on the road.  The first was the Sunshine Skyway Bridge over Tampa Bay which carries US 19/I-275.


The current Skyway Bridge is a 4.14 mile cable stayed design which opened in 1987.  The new Skyway Bridge is 430 feet tall in the center span with a 180 foot clearance for ships to pass through.





The original Skyway Bridge opened in 1954 which extended US 19 across Tampa Bay from St. Petersburg to US 41 in Memphis.   The original Skyway Bridge was a two-lane cantilever design which was expanded upon when a second span opened directly west of it in 1971 to upgrade it Interstate standards.  By 1973 I-275 was multiplexed over the original Skyway Bridge over Tampa Bay.  In 1980 a freighter hit the 1971 bridge which was serving southbound US 19/I-275 traffic which resulted in 35 people being killed when the structure fell into the waters of Tampa Bay.  By 1993 six years after the new Skyway Bridge was completed the 1954 and 1971 spans were partially demolished.  Parts of the 1954 and 1971 spans of the old Skyway Bridge are now part of the Sunshine Skyway Fishing Piers on both ends of Tampa Bay.

I stopped at the southern piers to check out the 1954 and 1971 bridge structures which is where I took my photos of the new span from.







Despite the Skyway Bridge being a toll road there is plenty of reassurance shields about reminding you that you are on US 19/I-275.



Comments

Popular posts from this blog

California State Route 232

This past month I drove the entirety of California State Route 232 in Ventura County. CA 232 is an approximately 4 miles State Highway aligned on Vineland Avenye which begins near Saticoy at CA 118 and traverses southwest to US Route 101 in Oxnard.  The alignment of CA 232 was first adopted into the State Highway System in 1933 as Legislative Route Number 154 according to CAhighways.org. CAhighways.org on LRN 154 As originally defined LRN 154 was aligned from LRN 9 (future CA 118) southwest to LRN 2/US 101 in El Rio.  This configuration of LRN 154 between CA 118/LRN 9 and US 101/LRN 2 can be seen on the 1935 California Division of Highways Map of Ventura County. 1935 Ventura County Highway Map According to CAhighways.org the route of LRN 154 was extended west from US 101/LRN 2 to US 101A/LRN 60 in 1951.  Unfortunately State Highway Maps do not show this extension due to it being extremely small. During the 1964 State Highway Renumbering LRN 154 was assigned CA 232.  Of n

Former US Route 50 and the South Lincoln Highway from Folsom east to Placerville

The corridor of Folsom of Sacramento County east to Placerville of El Dorado County has been a long established corridor of overland travel dating back to the California Gold Rush.  The Folsom-Placerville corridor was once part of the path of the Lake Tahoe Wagon Road which became the first California State Highway and later the South Lincoln Highway.  In time the South Lincoln Highway's surface alignment was inherited by US Route 50.  The Folsom-Placerville corridor also includes the communities of; Clarksville, Shingle Springs and El Dorado. Part 1; the history of the Lake Tahoe Wagon Road, South Lincoln Highway and US Route 50 through Folsom-Placerville Folsom is located on the American River/Lake Natoma of eastern Sacramento County.  That lands now occupied by the City of Folsom were part of Rancho Rio de los Americanos prior to the finding of gold at Sutter's Mill during 1848.  During the California Gold Rush the lands of Rancho Rio de los Americanos were purchased by Jose

Legacy of US Route 466 Part 3; Morro Bay to Shandon via Rocky Canyon

Part 3 of the US Route 466 Legacy series consists of the roadways that made up the highway between Morro Bay and Shandon of San Luis Obispo County.  The San Luis Obispo County segment of US Route 466 is notable due to it having been carried via a dirt segment through Rocky Canyon from 1933 to 1958.  Pictured in the cover photo of this blog is former US Route 466 facing westward into Rocky Canyon. Part 1 and Part 2 of the US Route 466 Legacy Series can be found below: Legacy of US Route 466 Part 1; California State Route 46 Legacy of US Route 466 Part 2; Tehachapi to Bakersfield  Part 1; mapping early US Route 466 in San Luis Obispo County As discussed in Part 1 of the US Route 466 Legacy series the western terminus of US Route 466 ("US 466") from it's inception until truncation in the 1965 was located in Morro Bay at California State Route 1 ("CA 1"). US 466 between Morro Bay and Shandon had two two primary alignments through it's history.  The initia